Now that I have shared with you the story of how my brother and I worked together to oversee the care of my parents (brilliantly I might add), it is time to discuss what happens when families aren’t able to create harmonious (though challenging) communications involving elder care and estate problem solving.

First, however, although I like to think that my brother and I were unique in our ability to conduct said problem solving necessary to assure the best care for my parents, we are hardly alone. Many families already know the life lessons I (and apparently my brother, as well) had learned prior to the time when caring for my parents became a “thing”, which lessons allowed us to align for a common goal.

Consider these influences on managing a family dispute:

  • Even if one has been able to incorporate high level listening, team building and problem solving skills throughout their life, the issues raised by the challenges facing us as our parents age or leave us can trigger many feelings and behaviors that seem almost foreign to us.

  • Although we may have evolved beyond our childhood strategies for daily living, not everyone in the circle of individuals requiring cooperation may have so evolved. We can be left confused and anxious about how to proceed.

  • Since this may be the first time we have had to deal with the challenges posed by elderly or deceased parents, we may not know what resources are available to us and we are so busy with our own daily lives that we find it difficult to carve out the time to discover these resources (including Mediation and Conflict Resolution Coaching).

    In my belief system, fear of the future is at the heart of many stressful situations, including conflict. The sickness or death of a loved one is at the top of stress-inducing circumstances. In many cases, taking the time understand your own reactions to the fearful situation can provide enough balance to manage a difficult situation.

    If you are facing a family crisis, contact Keystone Conflict Solutions LLC at or (404) 314-7228 to learn if Mediation or Conflict Management Consulting might be beneficial in clarifying potential steps to managing the crisis.